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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
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    Geelong, Australia
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    Default Swing gantry for the workshop

    A project that has been on "the list" for a while has been some sort of gantry to service the lathe. The downside of having a slightly larger lathe is that the chucks are also larger, and at over 25kg there's plenty of potential for injury and damage when trying to change them.
    I'd planned just to make some sort of rail that went from the lathe out into the workshop a metre or so, but with the mill and workbench in the same area it made more sense to build a swing style gantry that will cover the lot.

    I've already got a few metres of round tube gantry rail and an Altrac trolley that I picked up used a while back - so will use that for the rail.
    https://www.bomac.com.au/altrac-products/trolleys

    Plan is to attach that rail to a pipe upright and support it from the top with a stay. Rail will be at the top of the shed wall height, and the stay will be almost at the peak of roof.
    Bearings top and bottom to allow the whole assembly to rotate. Bottom will be on a plate bolted to the floor. Top will be tied back to the existing column that's attached to the pipe roof truss. Unlikely I'll need to lift anything more than about 50kgs with it so a dynamic test with 100kgs (ie me bouncing on the end of it) should be sufficient for a load test.

    Concept.png

    Before the whole COVID lockdown I picked up a piece of 80NB pipe for the upright.
    Dug out a suitable size tapered roller bearing from the junk box, and some bits of scrap steel to make a housing and spindle.
    Grabbed an old falcon front hub seal to keep the swarf and grandkids out of the bearing, and headed to the lathe.

    Spindle to take the bearing and seal.


    Seal and bearing installed in the housing


    Housing installed in the pipe, and spindle in place



    To be continued.....

    Steve

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Location
    Drouin Vic
    Posts
    310

    Default

    Good plan Steve, I have a swing gantry of very similar style that covers my lathe, mill and shaper, I spotted the gantry on it's way to scrap from a local servo that was being renovated. I used one of those cheap chicom hoists. It takes the back strain out of mounting everything like chucks, dividing head, rotary table, shaper vise etc. Annoyingly, I lined mine up with the column of the shed without checking it for plumb, it is quite a way off so the swing of the gantry is not level. Fixing that is on the list.

  3. #3
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    Nov 2017
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    Thanks Pete.
    I'm planning to get one of those little electric cable hoists too. Mate has one on his big A-frame gantry for doing lighter stuff and its awesome. No dangling chains, just the control pendant is a bonus too.

    Bummer on yours ending up out of plumb. Makes things interesting if gravity takes over and it starts to move itself!!
    I've been thinking about how to make sure the bottom plate is nicely aligned with the column, as there is no self aligning in the tapered roller bearing. Most practical way I can come up with is to plumb it up, then check for even gap between the housing and spindle using feeler gauges.

    The existing column in the shed is similar diameter round pipe. My idea at this point is to make the bracket for the top mount so it can rotate around the column for alignment, then once its all plumbed up weld an alignment lug onto the column to prevent rotation.
    Still churning ideas over though...

    Steve

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
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    Use some old angle iron even bed iron. Cut 4 peices to suit and drill and weld nuts to the center's of them. Use bolts ore thread rod for adjustment.

    Tack weld it onto the top and once up you can adjust it to suit perfectly level.

    I used this design on my old jib crane and new one I just built and helped with aligning it perfectly. It was opposite to yours as it was at the bottom.

    I thought I had a picture of my new one, but here is my old one
    Using Tapatalk

  5. #5
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    Dec 2013
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    Just to add, I had that round tube and trolley already installed in my shed 35 years ago, and have seen the trolley let go and fall to the ground as it spread, luckily no one was hurt. Maybe it was overloaded, not sure as it had no load limit on it back then.

    Just be careful and keep well under it's limits. I scraped mine, but my fix would have been to weld plates with half circle cut out and welded to the sides to stop it spreading.
    Using Tapatalk

  6. #6
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    Default Swing gantry for the workshop

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave J View Post
    Just to add, I had that round tube and trolley already installed in my shed 35 years ago, and have seen the trolley let go and fall to the ground as it spread, luckily no one was hurt. Maybe it was overloaded, not sure as it had no load limit on it back then.

    Just be careful and keep well under it's limits. I scraped mine, but my fix would have been to weld plates with half circle cut out and welded to the sides to stop it spreading.
    Thanks for the warning Dave (and for the previous alignment suggestion).

    This one is rated with a SWL of 300kg so should be plenty of extra capacity for what I'm using it for, but will definitely keep an eye on it.



    Steve

  7. #7
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    If you could weld or bolt a U shape plate either end it would probably take it's capacity to 500kg plus, but would be insurance for lifting 300kg without worrying about it spreading.
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  8. #8
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    No progress in the past few weeks but over the weekend I made and installed the base plate.
    The pipe ring locates the stub shaft made previously.




    Put a thick washer in the middle underneath the plate to allow it to be adjusted to level it. I also squeezed about half a tube of leftover Chemset under the plate before bolting it down so it would have a bit more to bear on.



    Leveled it then sprayed some cold gal on it.



    Steve

  9. #9
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    Nice work with the washers for self aligning, will you weld the slug to the pipe when finishing up?
    Also what size bottom bearing did you go with?
    For my heavy built 500kg-3.2m jib crane I went with 55x90mm taper roller on the bottom and another smaller one underneath to stop it lifting out.
    At the top I went with double bearings 55x100 and a 50x100mm, way Overkill but had them on hand.

    I know with your design being a mast style puts a lot less stress on the bearings top and bottom and the supporting structure than mine.
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  10. #10
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    Not planning to weld the slug to the pipe, there's only a couple of mm clearance in the diameter so it can't tip over and I don't expect the slight lateral movement will cause any issues in operation. I can always tap a couple of bolts into the slug through the pipe or down into the based if need be.
    Will retain the mast vertically at the top so it can't lift and come off the bearing.
    In hindsight I should have made the pipe ring twice that height so it overlapped the mast a bit more - just in case. Might machine another 10mm or so off the base of the slug yet.....

    Not sure what size the lower bearing is off the top of my head, but for scale the pipe is 4" so at a guess about 40mm ID and 75 OD.

    A slightly rough front wheel hub with unit bearing jumped out of the scrap yesterday yelling "use me for your top bearing!!". Means I just have to make a stub axle to weld into the top of the mast, and bracket to bolt onto the wheel studs on the hub.

    Spent a while last night stripping and cleaning the 3-jaw from the lathe as it was jamming from accumulated swarf in the jaws/scroll so didn't get much else done. Hoping to get the stub axle for the top made tonight...

    Steve

  11. #11
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    Default Swing gantry for the workshop

    Some progress on the top mount...

    Cut a flange out of some 16mm plate and turned a step in it for inserting into the pipe. Beveled the edge of the step to make the welding easier.
    Bored the middle out for the stub shaft, and welded the shaft in.




    Turned the shaft to size, threaded the center for a retaining cap for the bearing, and made/fitted the cap.







    Welded the whole lot to the mast pipe, and made a start on the mounting plate.




    Steve

  12. #12
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    Drilled the 5 holes for the studs, then scratched my head a bit about how best to cut out the hole in the middle to go over the hub.

    Considered cutting it out with the plasma cutter but that would have needed some extra finishing, Boeing it in the lathe would probably be quickest, but Id need to fit the 4jaw and reverse the jaws.
    So I took the longer but more interesting option of doing it on the rotary table.

    To do that I had to make up a plate I could clamp it to first. Something that will get used a bit I think.

    Also needed to make some tee nuts for the rotary table.



    I marked the entire grid but only drilled/tapped the holes I needed right now.



    Came out pretty well.



    Steve

  13. #13
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    Coming along great, it will help out so much in the shop.
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  14. #14
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    Sep 2012
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    York, North Yorkshire UK
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    Hi Steve, Guys,

    Didn't take long to press that new mill of yours into service, now did it

    Nice job there ! How many passes did it take ?
    Best Regards:
    Baron J.

  15. #15
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    About 3 passes John.
    I ramped it down as I turned the rotary table until I had a couple of mm or so depth then finished going round at that depth - rinse and repeat until it cut through.

    Yes, enjoying the new mill.
    Not 100% sold on the operator position to the right of the table but getting used to it. Great having a DRO but its very basic one. Would be nice to have a couple of features such as the center point between 2 points.

    Steve

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